October 3, 2019 The Sherlocks – Under Your Sky (Album Review)
Emerging in 2013, out of Barnsley, South Yorkshire, England, The Sherlocks consist of two sets of brothers— Kiaran (vocals, guitar) and Brandon Crook (drums) along with Andy (bass) and Josh Davidson (guitar). Together releasing their debut full-length in 2017, the Alternative Rock act reached number 6 on UK charts. Slowly following the footsteps of bands like Kaiser Chiefs (“The Only Ones”), The Vaccines (“Surfing in the Sky”), The Killers (“Change Your Mind”), and The Kooks (“Fractured and Dazed”), the English quartet is soon unleashing the follow-up to the successful Live for the Moment with their new album Under Your Sky.
Scheduled to come out on Friday, October 4, 2019, via Infectious Music, The Sherlocks’ latest, sophomore record saw the band opted for a more structured recording session – spend 4 weeks working Monday to Friday at Liverpool’s Parr Street Studios, with The Coral’s James Skelly on production duties. A step forward for the band, the 11 track album opens sunnily with the aptly and boldly titled “I Want It All.” This is then followed by the single “NYC [Sing It Loud],” which defines what The Sherlocks’ music is all about—upbeat, melodic, engaging, lyrically heartrending, nostalgic, and exploding with sunburst Post-Punk/Guitar Pop sensibilities.
Another thrillingly uplifting track ensues with the angular “Waiting,” to be followed by the even grittier “Magic Man,” whose grating guitar parts and driving beat will remind the initiated of seminal bands like Hüsker Dü (“What’s Going On?”), Sugar (“Helpless”), and Soul Asylum (“Somebody to Shove”). And then there is the New Wave sheen of “Dreams,” which will fit well onto a playlist that includes Echo & the Bunnymen’s “Everlasting Neverendless” and The Editors’ “A Ton of Love.”
Another smile-pulling and foot-stomping track plays next in the form of “Time to Go,” whose bouncy basslines and bluesy guitar ad-lib validate its Progressive tendencies. The intro of “Give It All Up” then serves as the calm and relaxing mood before it opens and glows its subtle New Wave energy, which then segues seamlessly into the equally bright and beautiful “One Day.”
“Now & Then” is a surprising change of style and rhythm, still ebullient with its frenetic beat but is more playful and tuneful, exuding a similar juvenile enthusiasm expressed consistently by the likes of The Libertines (“Heart of the Matter”) and The Strokes (“One Way Trigger”)—blissful and brilliant! With the second-to-the-last song, “Step Inside,” The Sherlocks then switches to neutral speed, giving the listener the time to catch his breath and prepare for the final wrap—the slightly slow swagger of the title track—reverberating, melodramatic, comforting, soulfully soaring, and then slowly submerging.
Only two albums on its members sleeves and yet The Sherlocks is already showing a promise of more Power Pop–sensible songs. What many of its contemporaries lack the relatively new band is aplenty of—distinct melodies, catchiness, and youthfully vibrant sonic energy. For this, Cryptic Rock gives Under Your Sky 5 out of 5 stars.